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sábado, 30 de julio de 2011

LITERATURE – Otto Weininger: The Last Misogynist


Hace tres años visite la bellísima ciudad de Buenos Aires.  Un día paseando cerca de la sede del gobierno llamada La Casa Rosada, bonita definición por cierto, descubrí una de las librerías más importante de la ciudad.  En aquella librería fue donde descubrí un libro insólito y escandaloso al mismo tiempo.  El libro se titulaba Sexo y Carácter, y me costo la ridícula suma de 25 pesos.  Nunca una inversión tan modesta me dio tantas ganancias para mi nutrición cultural.  Me adentre en su enmarañada  y psicológica lectura durante dos largas y exhausta semanas.  Cuando termine con sus casi 600 páginas quede más que petrificado, de cómo un joven de 20 ano en la convulsa Viena de principio de siglo pudo elaborar y escribir este libro maldito hasta hoy en día.
Sexo y Carácter es una obra que no conoce el término medio, es terriblemente transgresora, rompiendo al mismo tiempo los viejos y apolillados moldes de la filosofía de comienzo del siglo 20.  Hoy  en los círculos intelectuales todo el mundo habla de Heidegger como el filósofo del nazismo.  Más sobre Weininger siempre se ha edificado un sarcófago de silencio.  ¿Por que esta discriminación  a este personaje?  Algunos dirán era un Misógamo y encima Judío.  Lo más irritante es que todos hablan de la Misogamia de Weininger.  Más pocos han leído su libro en profundidad.
Eso si se le ha etiquetado como un apestado y se le ha arrojado al cementerio del olvido.  Mientras tanto legiones de mediocres gozan de una audiencia insólita entre el bostezo y la mediocridad de sus tediosos escritos.  Reconozco que no todo el mundo puede digerir las tesis de Weininger.  No es desde luego para almas pusilánimes o espíritus melifluos.  Frente a un personaje de la talla de Weininger no se puede ser neutral, o se siente una total repugnancia por sus ideas o pena o admiración.  No es fácil después de leer su libro sentirse indiferente.
Les dejo con algunos de sus pensamientos, “El hombre cuando niño, no siente la necesidad de la madurez sexual, la mujer desde los primeros anos.  La sexualidad más vulgar considera a la mujer como un aparato para el onanismo.  La mujer no es microcosmos, no fue hecha a la imagen de Dios.  La mujer no puede ser mala porque es únicamente amoral y vulgar.  La continuidad de la especie no puede constituir un deber moral.  No se pide su consentimiento al ser que va a venir al mundo.  Toda mujer tiende al matrimonio, es decir a la maternidad, a menos que sea una mujer emancipada, una lesbiana o simplemente, una reprimida alienada en su castidad.  El sacrosanto núcleo central del matrimonio es el coito, al que la mujer se aferra vivamente.”
Para mí lo más ridículo es cuando afirma en la pagina 534 que Wagner es el más grande hombre después de Cristo.  Conclusión: Otto Weininger fue un escritor delirante con una capa de nihilismo que tuvo la decencia de suicidarse como epitafio a su inimitable libro.
Three years ago I visited the beautiful city of Buenos Aires.  One day when I was wandering around the area of the government building known as Pink House, beautiful definition of course, that I discovered one of the most important bookshops of the city.  In this bookshop, I discovered a scandalous and unusual book.  This book is titled Sex and Character and it cost me only 25 pesos.  Never has such a modest investment given me so much in terms of cultural nutrition.  I found myself entwined in his twisted and psychological discourses during two long and exhausting weeks.  When I finished reading the 600 pages I felt petrified, at how a young man of just 20 years old during the convulsive era of Vienna during the turn of the century, could elaborate and write this cursed book, even up till today.
Sex and Character is a work that does not know the term moderation, it is terribly transgressor, breaking the antiquated mold of the philosophy of the olden days, during the time of the beginning of the 20th century.  Today among the circle of intellectuals everyone talks about Heidegger as the philosopher of Nazism.  But in the case of Weininger a sarcophagus of silence has been raised.  Why is there this discrimination against this person?  Some would say that he was a misogynist and a Jew.  The most irritating is that everyone talks about the misogynism of Weininger but few have read his book in detail.
Yes, he has been catalogued as a pest and he has been thrown in the cemetery of obscurity.  At the same time legions of mediocre writers enjoy the attention of a surprising audience, between yawns and mediocrity of their tedious works.  I recognize that not everyone in the world can digest the thesis of Weininger.  Definitely not the self-righteous and honeyed-flavoured souls.  Before a person of this stature like Weininger, we cannot be neutral, either one feels repugnance for his ideas or pain or admiration.  It is not easy to feel indifferent after reading this book.
I leave you with some of these thoughts, “A man, when he is still a child does not have the necessity for sexual maturity, a woman on the other hand already needs that from her first years.  The sexuality that is most vulgar relates to the woman as an apparatus for masturbation.  A woman is not microcosm; she was not created in the image of God.  A woman cannot be bad because she is simply immoral and vulgar.  The continuity of this specie cannot construct a moral duty.  Their consent cannot be expected for one to come into being and to come into this earth.  All women tend to seek matrimony, that is maternity, unless she is emancipated, lesbian or simply alienated and repressed within her chastity.  The central sacrosanct nucleus of matrimony is the coitus, to which a woman will grasp at with fervor.”
For me the most ridiculous is when he affirmed on page 534 that Wagner is the greatest man after Christ.  Conclusion: Otto Weininger was a writer who was delirious beneath a cape of nihilism, that he had the decency to commit suicide as an epitaph for this inimitable book.

2 comentarios:

  1. I maintain a philosophy blog in which the figure of Otto Weininger looms large. The understanding of Weininger I put forth is that he has been deeply misunderstood by many. He was not a misogynist nor a self-hating Jew, though that is how he has been typically read. I contend he was groping his way toward what cannot but seem an unbelievable claim: that human beings do not exist, that only feminine and masculine experiences comprise what we too abstractly refer to as "human." Taken literally this has startling consequences. It means, for example, that morality as it has traditionally been construed does not apply to women. But this is not a denigration of women. There is a stark difference between immoral and amoral: the latter is outside the realm of morality altogether and that's where women are. People, for some reason, forget that by far the greater part of human-created evil is perpetrated by men. If only men can be moral, it is because only men require being moral. The moral world of women is so utterly different from that of men that judgment across sex lines becomes impossible...

    I know my claims demand serious explanation and that is what my blog is about. More at phlogma.com.

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  2. Thanks for your comment, it is very interesting, your view on the amorality of women. I am not an expert in the works of Weininger, but his works have impacted me.

    I have visited your blog. I actually do not speak much english and my friend translates for me, so it is a bit hard to follow. But thanks anyway for your opinions.

    Agustin

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